It was only going to be a couple of months before the new Chippewa County Humane Association was complete, and ready for all the animals to move in.
But fire has destroyed the old building, and most of the animals weren't able to be saved.
The fire began at about 11 p.m. Monday. Shelter Director Didget Weber, who lives just feet away, says she was alerted to the fire by a sheriff's deputy who drove by and saw smoke coming from the shelter.
She says firefighters weren't able to get into the building because there was so much smoke. They did manage to rescue 12 dogs, but all 50 cats and about 13 dogs died in the fire.
Volunteers spent the day cleaning up, as fire investigators tried to pin down a cause.
Town of Anson Fire Investigator Dan Meagher says it appears the fire started in the center of the building, in a place workers call the kitchen.
Now, the staff is hoping to get into their new building in a few weeks, but is asking for help.
Volunteers can offer labor, and cash is welcome to meet their $300,000 goal.
You can donate to a fund set up at all Northwestern Banks, DJ's Marts in Chippewa Falls, the Cenex Station in Jim Falls, directly at the new Association site, or at the Eau Claire County Humane Association.